Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Roadrunners grab Southland crown, first victory in NCAA Tournament


From March 2 to March 18, The Roadrunners went on a wild ride.

Beginning with the final home game against Central Arkansas and ending in Cleveland, Ohio, in the NCAA tournament; the Roadrunners went 6-1. In that time, the Roadrunners won must-win game after must-win game, including a victory over Alabama State in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

Before the Roadrunners got to Dayton to face Alabama State, they had to run a gauntlet beginning on the second day of March.

As the woeful Central Arkansas Bears came to town on March 2, the stakes were simple for UTSA: win the last two regular season games and keep playing or lose one and a trip to Katy would be lost.

The win over the Bears meant that it was win or go home in Arlington on March 5.

Down 10 at the half, The Roadrunners dug deep and came back to win 68-63.

The Roadrunners would become the seven seed in the Southland tournament in Katy. Their first opponent would be the Northwestern State Demons, the two seed in the tournament.

Again, the Roadrunners faced a double-digit deficit in the second half, this time 14 points with 7:40 left.

Devin Gibson did what he had to do to guide the Roadrunners to the victory, recording a triple-double as the Roadrunners won 97-96.

The next day, the Roadrunners would face a Sam Houston squad that had won the previous two meetings this year.

The Roadrunners carried the momentum from the day before and knocked the defending conference champions out, 79-70.

March 13 marked the conference championship game. Only McNeese stood between Devin Gibson and a ticket to the big dance.

In a tight back-and-forth battle the Roadrunners pulled out a 75-72 victory and a berth in the NCAA tournament.

By winning the Southland title, the Roadrunners earned an automatic bid as a 16 seed. Their first opponent would be a fellow 16 seed, the Alabama State Hornets.

The final win of the season would come on March 16 when the Roadrunners topped the Hornets, 70-61 in the first round of the NCAA tournament in Dayton, Ohio. Melvin Johnson III scored 29 and the Roadrunners led by as much as 28.

By virtue of defeating the Hornets, the Roadrunners hopped on a bus and drove to Cleveland, Ohio, for a second round matchup with the number one overall seed Ohio State.

The Roadrunners took an early lead, but the Buckeyes were too big, too fast and too deep for UTSA.

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